Exploring a controversial net neutrality opinion: Not all data should be treated equally

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Washington recently became the nation’s first state to pass net neutrality legislation, a law in which violations by all internet service providers (ISPs) are enforceable, under Washington’s Consumer Protection Act. Net neutrality, or the principle that all internet data must be treated and delivered to consumers equally, was repealed at the federal level and remains a source of great debate across the tech industry.    Several states are already exploring passing similar legislation, though it’s worth noting that these laws are widely considered a symbolic move as federal regulation prevents states from passing their own net neutrality legislature. While we…

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Super-Local Broadband May Be The Best Way to Preserve Net Neutrality

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Water, electricity, internet: Three things that Americans can increasingly not live without.

Recently, though, that last item has seemed under threat. Earlier this year the FCC repealed net neutrality, allowing U.S. internet service providers (ISPs) to control the price of broadband speed and threatening equal access to information, education and other essential online services.

The battle may seem lost. But the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) has a plan to fight back.

In a recent report shipped to 100 mayors in 30 states, ACLU makes the case that, instead of leaving internet in the hands of private companies, it should be the concern of local administrators.

The report points out that the move would be perfectly legal, too. “Nothing the FCC has done prevents a city, county, or town from directing its own, municipally run service to honor strong network neutrality and privacy policies,” it reads.

Empowering cities to run their own internet networks could help bypass the power of private corporations, but has other important benefits, too. According to a report by the consulting firm Economist Incorporated, over 56 million households in the country don’t have access to high-speed broadband. That’s partly because many communities are too small and remote to be a good investment for ISPs.

Take the village of Pinetops, North Carolina. According to Motherboard, the town of 1,300 people had a long legal struggle with Big Telecom and eventually won the right to keep its municipal broadband — until a private company decided to step in and offer the same service.
In remote communities, people don’t mind paying for internet access: “We had it and they wanted to take it away,” Suzanne Coker Craig, a local commissioner and business owner told Motherboard. “Our folks are very excited to have it back.”
At the core of ACLU’s call for action is the idea that internet access is a democratic right. “Municipal systems should be built to serve all residents equally,” the report says, “even though the demands of affluent neighborhoods might be louder than others.” If Pinetops’ experience is anything to go by, the idea is sure to face some stern opposition from private ISPs.
But the case is strong for cities to take the lead, and the successful examples, many of which are of conservative communities, speak for themselves: “They’re reaping the benefits of local control over what has become an indispensable utility,” Jay Stanley, one of the ACLU’s report authors, wrote in a blogpost. “Other cities would be wise to consider taking a similar path.”

The post Super-Local Broadband May Be The Best Way to Preserve Net Neutrality appeared first on Futurism.

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How advertisers can stay afloat after net neutrality is gone

How Complete Beginners are using an ‘Untapped’ Google Network to create Passive Income ON DEMAND


While it’s still not clear what internet service providers will do after Ajit Pai’s FCC voted to repeal net neutrality rules, it’s certain that many online business models will be facing major upheavals. Of special concern is online marketing, which is largely dependent on fast and reliable access to content publishers and consumers, a requirement that was fairly met under net neutrality rules. Online advertisers will now be at the mercy of internet service providers (ISPs), who can decide who gets (or doesn’t get) to see their ads. Here’s what you need to know about the potential changes that can…

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Dozens of states are now considering plans to keep net neutrality rules

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When California proposed a bill this week to preserve net neutrality rules in the state, it was the most comprehensive effort in the nation. The bill would even move beyond the protections that the FCC recently moved to roll back.

But the bill is only one way states are moving to keep the rules after last year’s FCC decision. The activist group Fight for the Future has listed efforts in 35 states and the District of Columbia, including legislation under consideration and executive orders.

Those attempts to keep the rules come in an array of forms. A major part of the list includes a national attempt that kicked off in January, when 22 attorneys general signed on to a lawsuit challenging the rules. The suit,…

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Netflix should tell its users to support net neutrality, Senator Chuck Schumer says

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Netflix CEO Reed Hastings

On the latest Recode Decode, Schumer says he wants Netflix CEO Reed Hastings on his side.

With the help of Republican Sen. Susan Collins, the 49 Democrats in the U.S. Senate just need one more vote to mount a pushback to the FCC’s 2017 decision to repeal net neutrality.

And the Senate Minority Leader, Chuck Schumer, says Netflix can help get that senator on board.

On the latest episode of Recode Decode, hosted by Kara Swisher, Schumer said he’s trying to enlist tech companies of all sizes to get out the net neutrality vote. He’s been making calls to friends like Union Square Ventures venture capitalist Fred Wilson and Netflix CEO Reed Hastings to see what they can do.

“I put in a call to someone I know, Reed Hastings,” Schumer told Swisher and her guest co-host, Democratic strategist Hilary Rosen. “You know, Netflix users will pay a lot more money if this happens and they might get slower service too. So I’d love Netflix, anytime you subscribe, to just have a little chyron there and say ‘Write your senator! Don’t be charged more for your movies!’”

He quoted Wilson as having said that startups are “petrified” of being crushed because internet service providers give more favorable rates to wealthier, established companies.

“I really resent these ISPs,” Schumer said. “I talked to them — they came in and made the case. I felt more strongly for net neutrality after they came in than before. Because it’s clear they want to maximize their profits by squeezing people who don’t have much power and acceding to people who do.”

You can listen to Recode Decode on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Pocket Casts, Overcast or wherever you listen to podcasts.

On the new podcast, Sen. Schumer likened the prospective fight to restore net neutrality to the campaigns that defeated the copyright bill SOPA, the Stop Online Piracy Act, in 2011 and PIPA, the PROTECT IP Act, later that year.

“I remember SOPA and PIPA,” he said. “We had millions of people emailing and protesting and we succeeded in beating it. We can do the same thing here.”

However, Schumer said he does not consider himself a techie, even though he’s very interested in several issues surrounding the tech industry, such as immigration, net neutrality and rural broadband access. In the halls of the Capitol, he’s become known over the past decade as one of the holdouts who still uses a flip phone, not a smartphone — a choice originally made out of fears that the iPhone would be hacked, he recalled.

“I don’t do texting,” Schumer said. “I get emails on my iPad, but I don’t text. I don’t even know how to do it. I’m backward that way. But Putin’s not listening in to me, Kara!”

If you like this show, you should also sample our other podcasts:

  • Recode Media with Peter Kafka features no-nonsense conversations with the smartest and most interesting people in the media world, with new episodes every Thursday. Use these links to subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Pocket Casts, Overcast or wherever you listen to podcasts.
  • Too Embarrassed to Ask, hosted by Kara Swisher and The Verge’s Lauren Goode, answers the tech questions sent in by our readers and listeners. You can hear new episodes every Friday on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Pocket Casts, Overcast or wherever you listen to podcasts.
  • And Recode Replay has all the audio from our live events, including the Code Conference, Code Media and the Code Commerce Series. Subscribe today on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Pocket Casts, Overcast or wherever you listen to podcasts.

If you like what we’re doing, please write a review on Apple Podcasts — and if you don’t, just tweet-strafe Kara.


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The Senate has its own insincere net neutrality bill

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Now that the House of Representatives has floated a superficial net neutrality bill, it's the Senate's turn. Louisiana Senator John Kennedy has introduced a companion version of the Open Internet Preservation Act that effectively replicates the House…
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Six more tech companies join fight to save net neutrality

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Opposition to the FCC's repeal of net neutrality grew this week, as six more tech companies filed suit against it. Etsy, Kickstarter, Foursquare, Shutterstock, Automattic and Expa petitioned the US Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit as part of a gro…
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Want some protection against the rollback of net neutrality? We’ve got an option…


It can’t hurt to take some precautions against any eventuality…and a VPN service from an industry stalwart like Private Internet Access may be just the ticket to assure at least some protection. Right now, you can even get a one-year subscription to PIA for just $ 34.95 (a 58 percent savings) from TNW Deals.
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FCC Chairman Ajit Pai talks 5G, net neutrality repeal at MWC 2018

After bailing out on his CES 2018 appearance in January, reportedly due to death threats, FCC Chairman Ajit Pai today attended a panel at MWC 2018 in Barcelona. During the event, titled "The Future of the Industry: Transatlantic Digital Policy and Re…
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As US dismantles net neutrality, will EU tighten its grip on mobile operators?


To the great dismay of internet advertisers and publishers, the US Federal Communications Commission voted to do away with regulations ensuring net neutrality in December 2017 — protections largely seen as vital to keeping the internet open and free. On the contrary, the government argued, freedom from the burden of net neutrality will help the economy flourish and innovation soar. But we all know there’s a catch: Without mandated net neutrality, internet service providers gain complete control over the flow of digital content, leaving everyone else at their mercy. Net neutrality is still alive and well, it’s just across the…

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